The Gospel DNA Toolkit is for congregations, leaders, small groups, Sunday school classes,
leadership teams – and actually, anyone – who want to learn more about the connection between
the missional LCMS history and how it relates to the challenges we face as a church today.
The videos are from Texas District President Rev. Michael Newman and
NOW District President Rev. Dr. Paul Linnemann’s presentations during the 2018 NOW District Convention in Portland, Oregon.
* A New lesson and Video will be added each month with the exception of December.*
Gospel DNA Session 1: The Frontier
Download the Study Guide here: Gospel DNA Study 1: The Frontier GUIDE
Study 1: "The Frontier," dives into some of the challenges faced by early LCMS Christians, and considers how those experiences can be used to help with the challenges of today.
Gospel DNA Session 2: Movement & Institution
Download the Study Guide here: Gospel DNA Study 2: Movement and Institution GUIDE
Study 2: "Movement and Institution" is built around President Rev. Dr. Paul Linnemann's address at the 2018 District Convention. During the video, you will hear more about some of the differences between a movement (outward-focused) and an institution (inward-focused).
President Linnemann also talks about the importance of investing in people rather than in things, the wide variety of ministry contexts in the Northwest, and revisits the Five Hills of Ministry that were introduced at the 2012 District Convention.
Gospel DNA Session 3: Strand #1 People
Download the Study Guide here: Gospel DNA Study 3 People GUIDE
"The greatest struggle is to really care about others, to love people, to have time for people. There are a bunch of people we don't really like, or are really afraid of... but we can take the risk as people on the frontier and follow Jesus on His mission to be a friend of sinners."
Study 3 introduces the guide and video for DNA Strand 1, "People," which was outlined by Texas District President Rev. Mike Newman during his presentations at the 2018 NOW District Convention. Newman puts forth the idea that our legacy is an active love for people.
"The Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod had as its primary DNA strand, its primary marker - it oozes from the pages of written documents from all of our historical leaders - a love for people. A deep and abiding passion for peoples' souls, their eternity, their standing with Jesus Christ," Newman said.
Bonus Video: Family Ministry
Gospel DNA Session 4: Multiplication
Download the Study Guide here: DNA study 4 Multiplication
"Multiplication," the fourth installment of The Gospel DNA Toolkit, looks at DNA Strand 2 from Rev. Mike Newman's book, "Gospel DNA: Five Markers of a Flourishing Church." "Multiplication" dives into some of the growth patterns throughout the history of the LCMS, while also addressing the myth that, at its start, the LCMS was a "small, inward-focused group of immigrants."
Study 4 looks at DNA Strand #2 from Rev. Mike Newman’s book, “Gospel DNA: Five Markers of a Flourishing Church.”
So far the study has examined such topics as “The Frontier,” “Movement and Institution,” and “People” (DNA Strand #1). “Multiplication” dives into some of the growth patterns throughout the history of the LCMS, while also addressing the myth that, at its start, the LCMS was a “small, inward-focused group of immigrants.”
Bonus Video: Being a Blessing in a Changing Culture
Gospel DNA Session 5: Truth
Download the Study Guide here: DNA Study 5 Truth
"Truth" is the fifth installment in this toolkit. Like other studies in the series, this one focuses on personal reflection, group discussion, strategic actions, and prayer, which are all built around Rev. Mike Newman's book, "Gospel DNA: Five Markers of a Flourishing Church."
During his presentation at the 2018 District Convention, which makes up the video element of this study, Newman notes that "we have that gift for the world, the gift of grace. We have a message every person in every community needs." He also offers evidence of our LCMS forefathers' historical attitude and perception on the truth. Some of the questions you can expect to encounter include:
1. In what ways might you help the people in the Great Northwest become open to hearing the truth of the Gospel?
2. What in your own church culture might be getting in the way of propagating God's Gospel truth?
Study 5 "Truth" VIDEO is the fifth study in this toolkit series. To be used with accompanying Study Guide. Like the other studies, this one focuses on personal reflection, group discussion, strategic actions, and prayer, which are all built around Rev. Mike Newman's book, "Gospel DNA: Five Markers of a Flourishing Church."
Gospel DNA Session 6: Adaptability
Download the Study Guide here: DNA Study 6 Adaptability
Gospel DNA Session 7: Self-Sacrifice
Download the Study Guide here: DNA Study 7 Self Sacrifice
"Self-Sacrifice happens because we show the love that has been shown to us through the ultimate expression of love - Jesus' sacrifice on the cross for us." - Rev. Mike Newman
These words give an idea of what to expect in "Self-Sacrifice," the seventh installment of the Gospel DNA Toolkit. Strategic questions and historical examples are used to demonstrate the importance of this particular DNA strand.
The study on Self-Sacrifice is the last DNA Strand marker in the toolkit that began in August to help unpack the message at the 2018 District Convention.
As President Linnemann wrote in his introduction to the toolkit: "Knowing an accurate picture of the historic missional movement of the LCMS can help us gain insight into who we are as a church, and that can help us bring that same spirit into the present day. Our church body is built on a solid theological foundation that still holds for our time. Our great challenge is to discern the essence of that foundation and allow it to inform our present practice as we seek to continue the missional movement that is Missouri in the 21st century."